1. Suicide Prevention 101 and Debunking Myths

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Unfortunately, some educators are more familiar with myths about suicide than facts and data. It is essential to help debunk myths about suicide so that educators can better understand their role, their response, and their impact. How myths are debunked is critically important. There are new data suggesting that focusing on myths may be counterproductive. Trainings that cover this area should focus almost exclusively on the accurate information and not attend to the myth much at all.

Terri A. Erbacher, Ph.D; Clinical Associate Professor, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine; Author of Suicide in Schools: A Practitioner’s Guide to Multi-Level Prevention, Assessment, Intervention, and Postvention
Matthew Wintersteen, Ph.D; Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry & Human Behavior Director of Research, Division of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Sidney Kimmel Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University; Executive Board, Prevent Suicide PA, Philadelphia, PA

Course Length: 30 minutes credit

Course Learning Objectives:

  1. Participants will be able to identify common myths about suicide that may interfere with prevention efforts and perpetuate stigma.
  2. Participants will be able to discuss facts about suicide to debunk common myths.
  3. Participants will be able to identify risk/protective factors and warning signs for youth suicide as portrayed through a video vignette.

Course Supplemental Material:

    1. Joiner, T. (2010). Myths about suicide. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
    2. Suicide Prevention Resource Center (2012). The Role of High School Teachers in Preventing Suicide. Available here.
    3. American Association of Suicidology, in collaboration with the National Center for the Prevention of Youth Suicide. Myths about Suicide.  Available here.
    4. Preventing Youth Suicide from Youth.gov. Available here.

Course Achievement: No certificate will be available for this class. Completion for this class will, however, show up on the user’s transcript. Once users complete the entire course (8 classes), they will be able to print a certificate.

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